Rail journeys across England will undergo the biggest transformation in decades, thanks to improvements being delivered in new franchise deals, the government announced today.
The scheme will play a vital role in bringing the Northern Powerhouse to life, rebalancing the economy, creating jobs, opportunity and growth, and providing significantly better journeys across the region.
The government has announced it intends to award the Northern franchise to Arriva Rail North Limited, and the TransPennine Express franchise to First Trans Pennine Express Limited.
Together they will oversee a massive £1.2 billion boost to rail services with brand-new modern trains, more seats, more services and a host of improvements to deliver a modern, 21st century passenger experience.
Transport Secretary Patrick McLoughlin said: “We promised passengers a world class rail service that would make the Northern Powerhouse a reality – and I’m delighted that we have found 2 operators that will deliver exactly that.
“As a one nation government we are committed to closing the economic gap between north and south. This deal, and the joint management of the franchises, will bring the Northern Powerhouse to life.”